PCS Policies

At Pacific Crest Snowcats we pride ourselves on what we believe are fair, friendly policies. But it is your responsibility to understand them fully prior to booking your trip. Thank you for taking the time to carefully review our policies and for your understanding in their enforcement.

Making a reservation

You can book your reservations online by clicking any "Book Now" button on our website. Please make sure that you have reviewed all of our cancellation policies and understand and agree to all terms outlined below. To avoid any third party booking fees, text or call us at 530-608-0272 to or, email us: info@pacificcrestsnowcats.com

Regardless of how you book your reservation, please review carefully the email confirmation that our system will generate and send to you. Double-check the date, day of the week, number of guests and all other information.


Bookings are not confirmed until paid in full. You'll receive a confirmation email with a link to our waiver.

Cancellations, credits and refunds

The beauty of snowcat skiing is that we can run our trips in any weather. Chairlifts may close for winds and storms but our trips run through any weather. Traffic to ski resorts and delays on the roadways due to storms are common during storm cycles, so please plan well ahead.

Unless PCS cancels your tour, assume that the tour will run regardless of weather. It is your responsibility to plan accordingly and arrive on time for your tour. In the event you are late, due to any circumstances, the tour may have to start without you, and you will not be refunded.

If you need to reschedule your tour this can only be done at least 10 days prior to your tour date and your deposit can be applied as credit toward future days or other adventure services offered by PCS. If you cancel within 10 days of your scheduled trip or do not show up, no credit will be given. In the event of an injury or other family emergency, please let us know as far in advance as possible and full credit may be considered with the submission of a medical report.

Although unlikely, PCS reserves the right to cancel or reschedule trips for any reason. This may include an inadequate number of bookings for a tour, unsafe snow conditions or weather, snowcat mechanicals, guide sickness or injury, or any other unforeseen circumstance. If PCS must cancel your tour, we will work to reschedule you or full credit will be issued for 1 year, as long as you book prior to that date. After that, it will decrease in value by 20% annually. This credit may be used toward any future trip, subject to availability, without any administration fee.​

No refunds can be given due to severe weather, environmental conditions, airline/travel issues, or other unforeseen circumstances beyond our control that cause a trip to be canceled.

Thank you for reading and understanding these policies and respecting our mutual commitment. We are reserving seats on our snowcats for you and your group— and turning away other guests— for your selected day. If you have any questions about these policies, please do not hesitate to contact us either by text, email, or phone.


Pacific Crest Snowcats has led trips on our Tahoe site since 2000, and has a perfect safety record. Every precaution is taken to assure your safe enjoyment of the backcountry.

We hire only the best guides and snowcat operators in the business. These folks are trained in medical response, avalanche forecasting, high and low angle rescue, and caring for injuries in a winter environment.. Our snowcats are outfitted with state-of-the-art first aid and rescue gear.

At the start of every day guests are walked through a discussion of safety and proper beacon use. This includes familiarization with the snowcat, loading/unloading procedures, rescue scenarios and backcountry protocols. Then you can just relax and enjoy the ride knowing you are in good hands.​


Your health is our top priority, and we have put special measures in place to keep all guests safe both during and after your trip.

We have increased the ventilation and outside airflow in our snowcats. Guests and our staff will not be required to wear face masks on the snowcat. Of course, masks are welcome and a personal choice for each guest.

Wellness Checks - Employees receive daily wellness checks to ensure they are healthy and symptom-free. If you or anyone in your group is experiencing symptoms, we will work directly with you to reschedule your tour.

Stringent Cleaning - We’ve increased the frequency of disinfecting surfaces and equipment between tours, and hand sanitizer will be available to all of our guests.

Contactless Waivers - Guests will now be emailed a link to complete releases online in order to reduce physical contact and promote social distancing.


Here is a brief rundown of common questions asked by past clients. If you don’t see your question listed or still need clarification, please contact us via email or by phone at 530-608-0272 .

How good of a skier or snowboarder do I need to be to go snowcat skiing or snowboarding?
Skiers and snowboarders need to have advanced skills and be able to link turns in all conditions and be comfortable in powder. PCS has the entire spectrum of terrain available for all types of skiers and snowboarders from wide, open powder bowls to steep, technical lines. Ideally, forming your own group will insure a like-minded experience as our guides have endless options to choose from each day. With a group of mixed ability the option always exists to split the group because we operate with two guides per snowcat.
How many runs does an average group get in a day
We typically get 7 to 10 runs in a day, depending on group efficiency and snow conditions. Booking a private group will allow you to maximize your amount of runs.
You are expected to arrive with Modern Powder skis, or snowboard suitable for the wide range of conditions that may exist in the backcountry including Deep Powder, firm snow, crusts, and warm snow. Please bring extra warm layers and gloves as well as some snacks to keep your adventure fueled up!
Is it customary to give the guides and snowcat operator a gratuity?
Yes. Your guides have dedicated themselves to your safety and experience and you are in highly skilled and capable hands as you expand your ski experience. Although the guides and operators working at PCS love their jobs, they also greatly appreciate the generosity of clients who reward a job well done. In service industries, gratuities of 18-20% are considered generous. All tips are shared between guides and snowcat operators.
How dangerous is backcountry snowcat skiing or snowboarding?
Backcountry skiing has inherent risk, but by choosing PCS you are choosing guides who have the skills and knowledge of our specific terrain to reduce those risks. You will learn from them as they describe the risks of each area, how to avoid them and what to do if you can not avoid them. Every precaution is taken to insure the safety of the guests, guides, and snowcat operator. This may include cancelling the trip due to inclement weather or unstable snowpack concerns. Please understand that these decisions are made for the safety of everyone involved.
What happens if some skiers/boarders are better than others?
Our terrain is best suited for advanced to expert skiers and riders. This is so everyone in the group is able to have fun, stay safe, and maximize efficiency. To accommodate any variation within a snowcat group, the tail guide will do their best to find an easier route for those who are challenged. PCS reserves the right to ask less proficient guests to sit out some runs if they consistently delay the group and impact the experience for others.
If you are concerned about holding up the group—or others holding you up—consider renting an entire snowcat for your own private party (12 maximum). When you’re familiar with the ability of everyone in the group, you won’t worry about the pace and you can focus on the pow!